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Old 11-01-2020, 12:50 PM   #1
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2003 W22 Under Load produces "pop", "pop", then OK

2003 Holiday Rambler W22 with GM 8.1L. I normally cruise at 62 mph and let the cruise control handle shifting under loading conditions. At a shift point from overdrive there is now a slight hesitation, then typically 2 or 3 "pop" sounds, then normal climb back to overdrive cruising at 62 mph.

There are no "Check Engine" lights. Had fuel checked, All good and installed a new fuel filter just in case.

I am now in RV Park in Paducah, KY on my way to Gulf Shores, AL.

Very concerned.

Ideas appreciated.
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Old 11-01-2020, 03:50 PM   #2
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Jeff, sounds like the "classic" bad plugs and wires.

Fred
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Old 11-01-2020, 04:01 PM   #3
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As Fred mentioned it may be the wires ans plugs. Have they ever been replaced?

A slight chance it could be the exhaust manifold too. Have you ever had any problems with the exhaust manifold?

How many miles are on the coach?
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Old 11-02-2020, 12:17 PM   #4
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Coach has 71,000 miles, never driven in snow or ice and very limited in the rain.

In fall I drive to Gulf Port, MS then turn around in Spring and drive back to Kalamazoo, MI.

Plugs and wires have never been touched. If this is a possibility, why no "Check Engine" Light?

Thanks for to come back.
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Old 11-02-2020, 12:31 PM   #5
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Plugs and wires have never been touched. If this is a possibility, why no "Check Engine" Light?
Thanks for to come back.
The number of " pops " or misfires , might not meet the ECM parameters for turning on the CEL .
The parameters may require , a number of miss fires in a specific time frame , to avoid a false CEL.
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Old 11-02-2020, 02:04 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by geofferyh View Post
Coach has 71,000 miles, never driven in snow or ice and very limited in the rain.

In fall I drive to Gulf Port, MS then turn around in Spring and drive back to Kalamazoo, MI.

Plugs and wires have never been touched. If this is a possibility, why no "Check Engine" Light?

Thanks for to come back.
Wow that's the longest I've seen on the original plugs and wires. Have you ever changed the hoses and belts?

Transmission fluid and filter still original too?
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Old 11-04-2020, 12:35 PM   #7
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Coach has 71,000 miles, never driven in snow or ice and very limited in the rain.

In fall I drive to Gulf Port, MS then turn around in Spring and drive back to Kalamazoo, MI.

Plugs and wires have never been touched. If this is a possibility, why no "Check Engine" Light?

Thanks for to come back.
Ours did the same, popping and less power when accelerating. Plugs and wires did the trick to fix things. Never got a check engine light when this happened.
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Old 11-04-2020, 05:53 PM   #8
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My 7.4l has popping problem also that no one can figure out. Three sets of plugs, three sets of wires, still the same. Mine does it on a down shift under heavy load at 2800 to 3200 RPM. It's not a backfire as far as I can tell. If I back out of the throttle it quits the popping. I had a problem with it overheating really bad (260 degrees plus), didn't know the temp was that high until I installed a Scan Gauge, the dash gauge showed 160 to 180 only. Finally discovered the radiator was covered on the front with lots of crud. After cleaning it the popping pretty much subsided. The main question I would ask is; do you know what temp your engine is running at and do you have a reliable temp gauge? Don't go by just the dash gauge.
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Old 11-05-2020, 11:20 AM   #9
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My 7.4l has popping problem also that no one can figure out. Three sets of plugs, three sets of wires, still the same. Mine does it on a down shift under heavy load at 2800 to 3200 RPM. It's not a backfire as far as I can tell. If I back out of the throttle it quits the popping. I had a problem with it overheating really bad (260 degrees plus), didn't know the temp was that high until I installed a Scan Gauge, the dash gauge showed 160 to 180 only. Finally discovered the radiator was covered on the front with lots of crud. After cleaning it the popping pretty much subsided. The main question I would ask is; do you know what temp your engine is running at and do you have a reliable temp gauge? Don't go by just the dash gauge.
In your case I'd be looking at or changing the distributor cap and rotor.
This would not apply to the OP's problem.
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Old 11-05-2020, 12:54 PM   #10
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In your case I'd be looking at or changing the distributor cap and rotor.
This would not apply to the OP's problem.
There have been at least two caps and two rotors.
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Old 11-05-2020, 01:53 PM   #11
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It should be noted here that the 8.1L does not have a distributor, it uses coil near plug ignition.


I second this likely being spark plug wires, I would suggest replacing the plugs (AC Delco 41-101 Iridium plugs) and the plug wires, re-gap the new plugs from .060 to .045 and bite the bullet and buy Brazel's / Ultra RV products Magnum Extreme spark plug wires.


https://www.ultrarvproducts.com/SPWE...ark-Plug-Wires


I burned through 2 sets of Taylor Extreme spark plug wires at $140 each before learning my lesson and buying these
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Old 11-05-2020, 08:16 PM   #12
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My 7.4l has popping problem also that no one can figure out. Three sets of plugs, three sets of wires, still the same. Mine does it on a down shift under heavy load at 2800 to 3200 RPM. It's not a backfire as far as I can tell. If I back out of the throttle it quits the popping. I had a problem with it overheating really bad (260 degrees plus), didn't know the temp was that high until I installed a Scan Gauge, the dash gauge showed 160 to 180 only. Finally discovered the radiator was covered on the front with lots of crud. After cleaning it the popping pretty much subsided. The main question I would ask is; do you know what temp your engine is running at and do you have a reliable temp gauge? Don't go by just the dash gauge.


Sounds plausible that this could be pre-ignition that you are hearing. That could also explain the overheating as pre-ignition is indicative of a lean condition which generates a lot of heat.
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Old 05-26-2021, 04:43 AM   #13
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Caused by relaxed intake manifold gasket

2003 engines have an advisiry posted that the elastomeric intake manifold relaxed and traces of oil mist is entering the intake fowling plugs and valve stems causing pre-ignitionor popping in the intake manifold.
Check on it by removing an intake manifold bolt and look for oil traces on it. I replaced and retorqued to new higher values all intake manifold bolts as detailed in one of my previous posts and the issue disappeared completely. Used DEXTRON to clean up he mess in the intake manifold.
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Old 05-26-2021, 05:22 PM   #14
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Replacement of plugs and wires solved the problem.
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